White Hawk Tethered Aerostat
Name of the provider (company name or main contact name), or FIRE IN ID ? CNIM Air Space
Scope, rationale, context: general description. Precise here if this technology is currently use (eg. company name or contact info) A tethered aerostat is a lighter-than-air balloon connected to its mooring station by a tether. It takes onboard a payload, which can be composed of an EO/IR optronic gimbal or any other type of sensors (radio relay, 4G bubble, IMSI catcher, ...). The tethered aerostat is characterised by its high persistence: during missions, unlike a drone, it can be deployed for several days or even weeks. Thus, it will be able to carry out its surveillance mission during large infrastructure fires that are long-lasting. Giving firefighters a three-dimensional aerial view (up to 150 meters high), the White Hawk tethered aerostat can be used to observe and monitor the entire site during infrastructure fires, such as the recent fire at Notre Dame de Paris in France or the fire at the Lubrizol plant. It enables the firefighters to identify strategic points of the fire, and to transmit reliable information to the ground, which is essential for decision-making. During a natural disaster (e.g. an earthquake), the tethered aerostat, thanks to its on-board sensors, provides help to the rescue services in terms of organisation and victim assistance (locating victims using IR vision or an IMSI catcher, enabling communication between all the firefighters on site using a 4G bubble, etc.). This CNIM Air Space system has been tested by the French Customs and the French Gendarmerie Nationale.
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- The tethered aerostat, spherical, with a volume of 40m3, which can reach a flying height of 150m.
- Its trailer, which brings mobility to the solution: it can easily be inserted into a convoy of rescue vehicles, and, once on an operation site, it can be deployed from one place to another.
- Its payload, which can be adapted according to needs, whether they are related to observation or communication: EO/IR optronic gimbal, communication sensors (radio relay, 4G bubble, IMSI catcher, etc.).
- Its ground station, which controls the payload, and display or save data. The standard configuration for the transmission of information between the aerostat and the ground is via PLC/Ethernet. However, other transmission modes can be adapted (LTE or radio), allowing the data to be processed away from the intervention site, for example inside a nearby fire truck.
CNIM Air Space's White Hawk tethered aerostat presents advantages such as 24/7 persistence: the tethered aerostat can be deployed on missions lasting up to several weeks. It is also a mobile solution, with low operational costs (only 1 person to operate the camera) and quickly deployable: once inflated the aerostat can reach its maximum flying height in less than 10min. Finally, the tethered aerostat is quick to handle and no remote certification pilot is required.
Those characteristics make it a remote aerial surveillance or communication mean perfectly adapted for infrastructure fires and Search & Rescue missions.
TRL of the proposed solution - Innovation stage (if applicable) 7-8: System/Subsystem development
Web addresses/URL of flyers and information https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=UcCPM4cRkts&feature=youtu.be
Attachment (file) 20191115_LEAFLET_WHITE_HAWK_EN.pdf (945 kB)